‘In like a lion, out like a lamb’: March folklore explained


Photos courtesy of The Associated Press

(KTVX) — “If March comes in like a lion, it will go out like a lamb.” You may have heard the saying, but where does it come from?

Google reports that, according to search traffic from the past five years, searches for “in like a lion” and “in like a lamb” spike in early March every year.

According to the Farmers’ Almanac, the weather folklore stems from ancestral beliefs in balance, meaning if the weather at the start of the month was bad (like a roaring lion), the month should end with good weather (gentle, like a lamb).

The saying may hold sometimes, the Farmers’ Almanac explains, because March is typically when we see the transition between winter and spring.

The Paris Review says the folklore has a few origin theories, including an astronomical connection. In March, the Leo zodiac (the lion) is the rising sign, and when we reach April, it is a ram (or lamb).

Another theory says the folklore has a biblical origin, according to The Guardian.

“Jesus’s first appearance was as the sacrificial lamb, but he will return as the Lion of Judah, hence those symbolic animals,” the Guardian reports.

Many connect with this origin theory because the celebration of Easter, the Christian holiday that marks the belief in the resurrection of Jesus, occurs over March and into April.

The Farmers’ Almanac also highlights other March-related weather folklore such as “As it rains in March, so it rains in June” and “So many mists in March you see, so many frosts in May will be.”

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